Children’s Corner: When We Stayed Home

Posted October 20, 2020 by Lillian in Children's Corner, Reviews / 1 Comment

I received this book via the publisher, Huqua Press. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.

Children’s Corner: When We Stayed HomeWhen We Stayed Home by Tara Fass LMFT, Judith A. Proffer
Illustrator: Yoko Matsuoka
Published by Huqua Press on 2020-09-22
Length: 50 pages
Reviewing Paperback Rating:

With whimsical illustrations and relatable prose, When We Stayed Home helps young children navigate all of their great big feelings and cheer themselves on during the upheaval of pandemic, honoring their role as the "super-helpers" they are by washing their hands, wearing masks, social distancing and staying home. Along with the family dog as his trusty sidekick, When We Stayed Home's super-helper builds virus-free forts, decorates silly toilet paper-shaped cookies, enjoys screen visits and dance parties with family and friends, and relies on his resourceful creativity and imagination to weather the virus storm. Children ages 3-8 will recognize their own experiences and emotions as they see our super-helper paint endless pictures and draw chalk art, read books and do puzzles, wave hello to masked neighbors, play under a bluer-than-usual sky, and feel all the feelings as they miss school, playgrounds, and friends and family staying at home in their own houses. Inspired by co-author Proffer's resilient five year-old nephew, who continued to find moments of comfort and mirth in home, nature, adventures and activities even while longing for the virus to go far, far away. Co-writer Licensed Family and Marriage Therapist Fass worked with families during the pandemic to maneuver its bumpy road with tools, optimism and hope.

A relevant story for our time in history, When We Stayed Home is written for the children who are anxious and trying to make sense of this pandemic. Told from the perspective of one little boy and his dog, the story walks through the beginning stages of the lockdown and how by staying home, he and others became super helpers. The little boy discusses how as a “super helper” he wore a mask when going out to the store, the activities he did and adventures his imagination took him on, and how he stayed in touch with his family and friends while home. It even goes into what he misses most.

Overall, I love how the authors explore all of this through the eyes of a child. We’ve all been feeling the things expressed in this book, however told from the viewpoint of a child, it makes it relevant to them. To know they are not alone in their situation, I believe, will go a long way in helping ease the anxiety of children who may still be on lockdown or as they adjust to a new normal. When We Stayed Home is an important story that can create conversations with little ones as they return to schools and begin to discuss their own adventures over the last several months.

About Judith A. Proffer

Judith A. Proffer founded Southern California based and award-winning Huqua Press in 2010 as an independent publishing house to nurture talent and creativity. Previously Proffer spent twenty-five years in newspaper publishing, including nearly two decades with the alternative press (LA Weekly, OC WEEKLY, VILLAGE VOICE MEDIA) where she was Associate Publisher and Publisher, followed by co-ownership of the Sun Community Newspaper chain in the San Fernando Valley. Huqua Press publishes a diverse catalogue that includes culinary, juvenile, fiction and popular culture titles. Proffer seeks authors and works that uplift, inspire, inform and engage.

Featured titles include Caroline by Brandi Carlie, Dog & Butterfly by Ann and Nancy Wilson (Heart), The Wit and Wisdom of Gracie by Patti Davis, Our House by Graham Nash, The Lotus Kitchen by Gwen Kenneally and Places by Thaao Penghlis. She is the editor of I Hope You Dance, The Power of Spirit and Song (and co-produced the I Hope You Dance documentary), and is also the Vice-Chair of Meteor 17, overseeing literary and charitable efforts for the media company.

Proffer was honored by the Los Angeles Business Journal and the San Fernando Valley Business Journal as one of the leading “Women Who Make A Difference” in the Southern California Community. Additionally, she was honored by Friends of The Family for her many charitable endeavors. In 2010 she teamed with Hollywood caterer Gwen Kenneally to create Magpie Mini Pie Gourmet Pies, a pop-up bakery with proceeds from the artisanal pies going to charity. The pies remain part of the event menu for Gwen’s Back to the Kitchen Catering Company. Proffer has taught writing workshops to children, adults and incarcerated at-risk youths. She is launching The Word Garden in 2021, a non-profit writing resource for non-writers. She’ll host monthly writing workshops, offer templates and writing tools on The Word Garden website and will provide writing workshops for at-risk students in underserved communities.

About Tara Fass LMFT

Tara Fass, LMFT has treated the walking wounded of Los Angeles for twenty years as a therapist/mediator and co-parent educator through her clinical work and private counseling. She was a Huffington Post contributor for six years and blogs for “It’s Over Easy,” an online divorce support resource. When We Stayed Home is her second book.

“The work I am doing during covid through telemedicine is an attempt to sharpen inner listening, to accurately name and express pain, and thereby better regulate emotions. The impact of Covid and quarantine on families and children today is something we’ll be discussing for decades to come, attempting to make sense of it all.  It’s essential to talk about the ‘tough stuff,’ about real feelings. If we’re having awkward conversations, chances are we’re acting out less that which is not understood.  By not shutting down what feels unspeakable we get out of our own way sooner and are the better for it.”

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